J.D. Moyer

beat maker, sci-fi writer, self-experimenter

What’s Up With OLD NAVY’s Jeans for Girls?

WTF?

WTF?

Kia recently wrote a letter to Old Navy which I think is worth reprinting here. In contrast to the boy’s jeans lineup which features reasonable options (Skinny, Straight, Boot-Cut, Loose), the girl’s jeans feature four types of “skinny,” and one option that implies the jeans could have been borrowed from the nine-year-old model’s boyfriend. I’m as socially liberal as anyone, but if she’s borrowing his jeans, what else are they doing? As a parent I’d like to be able to buy clothes for my grade-school age daughter that are comfortable, facilitate unrestricted running around at recess, and don’t have the word “boyfriend” in the name.

Try again Old Navy.

Old Navy! Really?!

What are you thinking naming your jeans for kids, Boyfriend Skinny? And why oh why do three out of five styles actually call themselves skinny? And one of the others is even skinnier than that??

I just want to buy some nice comfortable clothes for my seven year old to run and play in. To go to school in. I certainly hope she is very far from having her first boyfriend, and even further from borrowing his jeans.

Boys get a relaxed fit choice, and that’s what my daughter wants too.

And nix that boyfriend name in the kids jeans. Now. It’s really, really wrong.

Sincerely,
Kia Simon

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15 Comments

  1. mom

    Bravo!

    Nana

  2. mcslee

    Crazy. So, apparently the girls line is named after the womens line, which also has a Boyfriend option (though minus the “skinny” modifier). But that’s really an awful defense. Plus, the other names in the women’s line are just as terrible, e.g. “The Diva,” “The Flirt,” and “The Sweetheart.”

    • How ’bout a “casual aspirational” line of women’s jeans? “The Software Engineer,” “The Social Media Manager,” and “The Startup CEO.” They could even make one of those loose and one skinny. Express did that with men’s slacks (“The Producer,” “The Photographer,” and “The Innovator”). They also have “The Editor” and “The Columnist” women’s pants.

      C’mon Old Navy! Girls run around and women have jobs!

      The Gap/Old Navy needs to walk the walk in regards to their “Advancing Women” blurb on their social responsibility page.

      http://www.gapinc.com//content/gapinc/html/social_responsibility.html

  3. Catherine

    great letter- I find this so challenging with my 10 yr old girl in regards to makeup, clothes and anything related to teenage years. I’m from Berkeley so of course I feel socially liberal, but it’s too damn young.

  4. Solidarity man. That is bullshit.

  5. Well spoken, Kia! Enough of this adult invasion of the world of children. Perhaps you could print the response, J.D? That’s assuming there’ll be one?

    • Generic form-letter type response. They “take such concerns seriously.” We shall see!

  6. I applaud this mom for speaking up and sending a letter! Too many of us just silently curse, and purchase the jeans anyway. Well said, Kia!!

  7. Michael

    Yup. Great letter.

  8. Aaron Ashmann (halotek)

    This is why too PC for me. Word’s don’t have meaning until you assign them. Didn’t you say you were an INTP or something of the sort JD? Guess I still think young for 35 yrs old.

    • You might feel differently if/when you have a daughter, and you need to buy her jeans.

  9. Aaron Ashmann (halotek)

    I here ya JD, and i know you are way flexible as your site says. Just because I don’t have a daughter doesn’t mean I can’t comment on this (that would be a logical fallacy). I’m just kinda joking around calling ya old 😉

  10. Great post! To be fair, I have three boys but even I see the stupidity and lack of non-teenager clothes for young girls. All these images do influence. What are we trying to teach our girls??

  11. If you’ve got a complaint about sexualization of kids, then I’m with you. Don’t conflate it with skinny though. There is nothing wrong with skinny by today’s standards, which wouldn’t be considered skinny historically. Obesity is is just the other end of the spectrum from anorexic. Fat acceptance is no different from anorexic or bulimia acceptance. Social criticism is important. Even if it makes you cry.

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